Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFVs), such as battery electric vehicles and hybrids, are now more popular than petrol and diesel vehicles, according to more than 3 in 5 (62%) of dealers who stock AFVs.
The research, from Close Brothers Motor Finance, found that two-thirds of dealers who stock AFVs also confirmed that they are selling more now compared to 2 years ago, pointing towards heightened demand as we approach the 2030 ban on new petrol and diesel vehicles. 72% of dealers said that customers have done more research on AFVs compared to other fuel types, and 70% stated that customers are asking more questions about AFVs over petrol and diesel vehicles.
However, despite these positive signs, more than half (54%) of dealers who stock AFVs said that they make up a tiny portion of their stock. With the 2030 deadline fast approaching, 68% said they need to make the shift before it’s too late, and more than two thirds (67%) acknowledged that they are going to have to start stocking AFVs.
The research shows that this will bring benefits to dealers. 64% stated that AFVs are more profitable for them than petrol and diesel vehicles. 60% also confirmed that moving to AFVs was easier than they had anticipated. Dealers also made it apparent that the industry is beginning to adapt and accommodate AFVs more effectively, with two-thirds of dealers saying they believe the infrastructure in their region is now ready for the shift to AFVs.
Lisa Watson, Director of Sales at Close Brothers Motor Finance, said: “Ahead of the 2030 deadline, there is a clear movement amongst dealers to accommodate AFVs on the forecourt. Dealers are reporting demand, and recent SMMT new registrations data is showing some promising signs, with Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEVs) up a massive 40% compared to last year, and an 18.2% year-on-year rise in battery electric vehicle (BEV) registrations.
“This does mean that dealers that are still sticking to petrol and diesel models need to start seriously considering their AFV stock levels as adoption becomes more widespread. As well as ensuring dealers are best positioned to manage the transition ahead of the 2030 deadline, the transition could also bring economic benefits for dealers, as it has done for those already selling AFVs.”